PLANS to spend £7,000 cleaning up an historic stone have been shelved.

Redbridge Council's Area One Committee stills wants to see the high stone in Snaresbrook enhanced but councillors agreed spending £7,000 on it was too much.

The stone which gave Leytonstone its name is against the boundary wall of a block of flats at the junction of Hollybush Hill and New Wanstead.

Although it is only just inside the Redbridge Council boundary and its historical significance is linked more to Waltham Forest, Redbridge's Area One Committee was looking to fund half of the £14,000 project.

Snaresbrook councillors Chris Cummins and Peter Goody championed the case to see the milestone marker cleaned up but it has been agreed to earmark £3,500 for the scheme and see if the rest of the funds can be found elsewhere.

At a meeting of the Area One Committee tonight New Wanstead resident Barry Crace said £7,000 seemed a lot to spend in the current climate.

The 65-year-old said: "I think if it's going to be £7,000 minimum then at this time it's not something this committee should be considering.

"A few months ago I asked if some new benches could be put in the park for the benefit of residents and it says in this council report tonight that there are no funds available.

"I have no problem with the idea because it is heritage and it is important but is it necessary at the moment to spend £7,000?"

Sue Nolan, Snaresbrook Ward councillor, agreed and said she had reservations about putting £3,500 towards the project.

She said: "I must admit members have had slightly opposing views on this."

The council hopes English Heritage can help foot some of the bill as the high stone is a listed monument and Mrs Nolan said the community group the Wanstead Society has agreed to donate some funds.

The council is also going to approach Waltham Forest Council to ask if the authority might consider chipping in.